Demo

Wissen

Low-code – the game changer for banking

Digital transformation requires financial institutions to become more agile and continuously adapt to changing market conditions at an accelerated pace. Customers and employees alike expect digital solutions and automated credit processes - but the shortage of skilled IT staff and aging legacy IT often cause innovation backlogs. Low-code platforms are the solution for sustainably promoting innovation and developing customized and automated processes and software interfaces in a resource-efficient manner.

21. November 2022

What is low-code?

Low-Code describes the solution from fintus, which provides a standardized module and process construction kit for the development of software applications. In this way, applications and processes can be created, expanded and easily assembled using visual and model-based development and configuration methods, instead of only being created by complex programming of lines of code.

In short, instead of the IT expert spending weeks developing complex applications in sprints, lightweight configurations allow IT-savvy business users to model credit processes themselves, change terms and conditions, or add new checks.

In this way, low-code simplifies software development, increases its speed, and at the same time reduces its cost by relieving internal or external developers. The innovation cycle can be accelerated and users as well as employees from different departments can edit and optimize their applications and processes themselves, even without specialized IT knowledge. Low-code development uses standardized processes and software interfaces within the fintus Suite. Instead of a highly customized solution, speed and transparency are gained with a standard solution. There are no significant technical disadvantages in design, operation and performance compared to manually coded applications.

Low-code offers the opportunity for IT departments and business units to work together on new solutions and for companies to collectively master the digital transformation. Although programming with low-code platforms also requires a certain amount of training, the complexity is significantly lower than with classic full-code work – low-code platforms can be used intuitively, especially for tech-savvy digital natives.

 

What is a low-code platform?

The fintus low-code platform provides the basis for modular software development and the interface for developing and optimizing applications and processes. The platform separates into the modeling of processes according to BPMN 2.0, the configuration of the banking data model including field definitions, entity model, etc., and the graphical design of the interfaces for interested parties, customers and employees of financial institutions.

The fintus Suite either already delivers an executable application or a specification that is used to create or edit an application. A modular construction kit consisting of drag-and-drop options, forms, processes and workflows enables easy operation and development. The so-called ramp-up costs are dramatically lower than for individual software development, which starts with a blank sheet of paper (or even worse: specifications).

The intuitive structure of low-code platforms means that time-consuming and manual programming work is replaced by graphical modeling methods and visual application designs. At the same time, IT retains the ability to connect even highly complex interfaces, logic checks, pricing engines, rating engines, etc. to the solution using so-called Java classes and delegates.

Low-code platforms thus enable simple and individual development, which can be directly adapted to the requirements of the own financial institution. This creates greater independence from IT resources, while at the same time making it necessary to have permanently trained IT-savvy employees in the department.

The fintus Suite enables IT departments and business units to work together more efficiently: Tasks can be processed separately from a business and technical perspective on the shared environment. The respective know-how can be used in a targeted manner to develop automated and customer-friendly solutions. Thus, low-code platforms offer several advantages over conventional development:

  1. fast, modular and individual development
  2. process optimization of recurring workflows
  3. faster innovation cycles
  4. cost savings
  5. independence from IT resources

 

Low-code vs. Robotic Process Automation

Robotic Process Automation (RPA) is also a technology that automates business processes in companies. The basis of RPA is the simulation of a human’s actions in different software applications, which the software mimics in order to automate the work. The technology has its strengths particularly in structured and rule-based processes, which it can fulfill quickly, reliably and digitally, as well as in the automation of individual, small-scale and specific tasks. However, if the processes become more complex and company-wide end-to-end processes are to be automated, RPA reaches its limits. Full- or low-code solutions are needed to integrate the micro-automations of RPA into the overall processes. In comparison, full- and low-code programming offer more complex and larger development possibilities than Robotic Process Automation.

 

Low-code development: a win-win for innovative financial institutions

Many banks, factoring and leasing providers, development banks, credit institutions and others want to take advantage of the many benefits of low-code – especially in times when digital transformation is the key challenge in the face of a simultaneous shortage of resources. The demands of customers and employees alike for digital solutions and automated processes are increasing, so it is important to offer modern software and process solutions – in the best case better and faster than the competition. After all, only with up-to-date, technical options can customers and specialists be convinced of one’s own company and can the digital transformation succeed in the long term.

For IT departments and system houses, this means full order books – for clients, it often means long waiting times, frustration and innovation backlogs. The use of low-code platforms can provide a remedy, as employees from the specialist departments can be involved in software development. This relieves IT departments and allows them to use the valuable free resources for more complex projects. The potential uses of low-code are extremely diverse: application sections, approval processes, rule-based decisions and touchpoints with customers can be created in a modular fashion and also linked to third-party providers via interfaces.

 

Low-code in the financial industry

Banks and financial service providers are feeling the pressure of digital transformation. Automated customer experiences, a coherent customer journey in application lines and self-service portals, and digital touch points are the key requirements. It is precisely here that low code offers an exciting alternative to traditional IT solutions, enabling companies to respond quickly and competently to market changes, new customer requirements, or regulatory guidelines.

The repetitive nature of document- and data-driven processes in banks in particular makes them easy to map and automate digitally. In particular, credit processing in the area of personal loans and commercial loans to businesses and companies represents an interesting field of action. End-to-end processes from the application stage to the decision and disbursement with digital software interfaces for the interested parties as well as the digital bank workplace represent a perfect scenario for the strengths of the low-code platform.

Thanks to the banking predefined data model with natural and legal persons as well as complex predefined entities for the usual application scenarios for credit institutions in the DACH region, the project launch is successful. For the implementation of the complex and market-specific rules as well as the extension of the data models and the individual definition of the processes, no more manual coding is required. These steps can therefore be carried out by it-savvy business units themselves.

Once the data models have been created by IT experts, it is possible, for example, to map corporate financing and investment loans automatically by configuring the front end of the low-code platform. Onboarding routes for new customer creation, credit or leasing inquiries can also be implemented via the low-code frontend. It is also possible to integrate suitable third-party providers in each case – for example, for digital ID and legitimation functions. In addition, the solution can be optimized further and further through the targeted optimization and cooperation of the IT departments. Providers such as Bancos, Creditreform, Criff Bürgel, Tink, IDNow, Mambu, SAP, Schufa and WebID can be easily integrated into the low-code solution via predefined interfaces and data field mapping. Together with the partners and existing interfaces, a construction kit is created that already delivers high added value for the future of customers at a unique speed.

 

Full code, low code, no code?

The discussion is fundamental and mostly conducted on an emotional level. Standard software vs. individual development – full code vs. low code and modular solution with no code. Only an interaction of the individual concepts can lead to project success.

In order to enable high-quality, fast and resource-saving innovations, an interplay between full, low and no-code programming in the team is necessary. Only in this way can IT expertise and bank-specific know-how be brought into the project realization in equal measure.

Full-coding represents the most complex way of programming applications or processes and can only be carried out by professional developers and via complex projects including the usual project setup (at worst via waterfall or agile via Scrum & Sprints with uncertain outcome).

Companies depend on the availability of professional IT resources and often a high flexibility in the realization schedule when creating full code. The code is fully self-developed and offers full flexibility of custom programming. Here, no- and low-code solutions are comparatively inflexible due to their modularity – their modules, on the other hand, can be flexibly used and reproduced in different projects, while custom code usually has little reusability.

No-code programming offers an even lower entry hurdle than low-code platforms. This technique does not require any coding at all, but can also only map a very low level of software and process complexity. While the targeted use of code increases the flexibility of low-code platforms and can offer greater development opportunities, the graphical and modular no-code platforms quickly reach their limits. This technique is therefore more recommended for small projects such as the graphical configuration of a questionnaire or a small mobile IOS / Android APP, rather than complex developments for banking processes and user interfaces.

 
full-code
low-code
no-code
Complexity
high
medium
low
Flexibility
medium
high
low
Costs
high
medium
low
Go to market
slowly
fast
fast

 

Low-code innovation for banks and financial institutions: fintus

Low-code offers companies a great opportunity to master the challenges of digital transformation and modernize processes in the short term. Low-code impresses with its speed, lower use of resources and, thanks to standardization, high reusability. As a supplement to low-code projects, full code always offers the opportunity to map a high degree of individuality even in a standardized world.

Thanks to low-code, the talents and skills of employees from the specialist departments can be effectively and beneficially integrated into project implementation, instead of only including them in the requirements definition.

In order to implement low-code platforms sustainably and functionally, it is advisable to work with a competent implementation partner, at least in the initial phase.

The fintus Suite was developed specifically for the requirements of the financial sector. It can be easily integrated into the IT environment at financial institutions and offers all functions for innovative low-code banking in one platform. Based on the open system architecture, fintus can be used to connect any core banking systems, document management systems (DMS) and existing ERP/CRM systems at banks and to design end-to-end processes.

Users in the bank work via the digital workplace in a 360° view of the business transaction or the customer and are supported by process automation. Applicants and customers benefit from individually designed interfaces and the ability to handle their own requests with a high degree of autonomy.

With the fintus Suite and the interaction of low-code with ready-made modules and processes, fintus customers have the decisive advantage in digital transformation.

Low-code beats development – simplify your project from request right through to go-live

More about fintus.